PM threatens to abolish Barbuda Council

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Prime Minister Gaston Browne has issued yet another threat to the Barbuda People’s Movement (BPM) regarding how the sister isle’s affair are managed through the Barbuda Council.

He has threatened to “abolish or dismantle” the council if members of the BPM-led body “try to and frustrate our [the government’s] progress”.

 He made the comment on Saturday while noting that: “The conditions in Barbuda are such that it does not make any sense to contest an election. We have governed the country with a firm but fair hand and if the Council was to try and frustrate our progress, we would dismantle the council, abolish it, because at the end of the day Barbuda is just a constituency.”

The BPM now has control of the council of nine elected members and two non-elected members following an election which was held on March 27th.

Last week, Browne told Parliament that while the BPM may have a majority on the council, it is still a powerless body since the Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP) government has the final say in terms of the overall development of the twin island state.

He also took a swipe at the Member of Parliament for Barbuda, Trevor Walker, by telling him directly that he would retire him [Walker] in the public’s interest.

 Meanwhile, as it relates to the ABLP’s defeat, the prime minister is of the belief that his party’s loss stems from the people’s anger over the rebuilding effort in Barbuda.

He said if another government were in power at the time when Hurricane Irma destroyed the island, it would have faced the same anger from the Barbudans.

“They are not taking any responsibility for their own negligence. The reality is they are the ones who failed to insure their properties. The hurricane came and destroyed the properties and as far as they are concerned, it is the government’s responsibility to fix back their properties.

“Inasmuch as we have no such legal responsibility, we have undertaken to build them back, but it is going to take some time,” Browne stated.

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